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Friday, Sep 09, 2005

  

The Late Show

There's a new Brotherhood/Squadmates movie from Brothers in Arms: Earned in Blood, Gearbox Software's upcoming World War II shooter sequel, offering gameplay footage along with thoughts on the topic from writer Mike Neuman and military consultant John Antal. The movie is available on the Brothers In Arms Website and mirrored on 3D Gamers, Boomtown, and Worthplaying. Also, a new Fahrenheit movie shows off Quantic Dream's now-gold adventure game also known as Indigo Prophecy. The download is available on 3D Gamers, GameSpot, and Worthplaying. Meanwhile, a new X-Men Legends II: Rise of Apocalypse movie is available (thanks Frans), showing off some multiplayer mutant mayhem from a console version of the upcoming superhero game. Finally, Eidos Interactive offers downloads of a couple of new "snippet" videos where Toby Gard discusses Lara Croft's polygonal loveliness among other things.

Site Seeing

The official The Matrix: Path of Neo Website is online, the multilingual Flash homepage replaces the teaser that previously kept its seat warm. Thanks GameGossip.

Dear Diaries

Endless Ages Moving

MMOLands is a newly launched MMOG portal offering access to multiple titles. They are currently offering a mini game and an educational offering as well as testing of a new Endless Ages server, as they are becoming the new home to Avaria Corporation's MMORPG. There is an announcement in a pop-up from the front page explaining the transfer of accounts, and changes to the system that will add free-to-play areas to the game as well as a one-time fee for more complete access. After a short beta testing period, the original Endless Ages server will shut down, and MMOLands will become the sole hosts.

Evening Q&As

  • Star Wars: Battlefront II
    The Star Wars Battlefront II Q&A on ControllerFreaks.com talks with Shara Miller of LucasArts about the Star Wars combat game: "Because most gamers aren’t as well-adapted to flight as they are to ground combat, we wanted to concentrate on making space missions easy to pick up and play. Second, we wanted to keep the emphasis of the player’s heroism and ability to achieve all the objectives themselves in space. We talked a lot about having special commands in ships, but ultimately, we learned that it was much more valuable to most players to give them easy ways to dodge oncoming missiles or double back quickly on a target. So the design and engineering teams developed a system whereby with one or two simple button taps, players could do barrel rolls and Immelmans, in any direction. I think you’ll find it’s a pretty good trade."
  • Control Monger
    onRPG.com's Q&A with Control Monger's Clyde Bielss talks with the CEO of MindSurge Entertainment about their upcoming online FPS: "The game as it is now is not a MMOFPS, but only a Online Shooter. The Free Version of the game will not have a ranking system, Chat room, Clan system or anything else you would think a MMOFPS would have. You can think of the Free Version as a training version, It will have most of the features the MMOFPS version will have so you can learn to play but with none of the extra goodies the MMOFPS version will have. The expanded MMOFPS version of the game, that we will finish several months after the Free Version, will be a full MMOFPS and have everything I mentioned above and more."
  • Guild Wars
    Sorrowful Music on IGN discusses the music in Guild Wars: Sorrow's Furnace with composer Jeremy Soule, while the new Guild Wars Fansite Friday #58 on Guildwars.dk answers several general questions about the game. Thanks Guild Wars Slovenija.

Evening Previews

  • EverQuest II- Desert of Flames on IGN.
  • Full Spectrum Warrior: Ten Hammers on GameSpy.
  • The Incredibles: Rise of the Underminer on GameSpot.
  • Serious Sam II on 1UP.
  • Titan Quest on IGN.
  • Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War: Winter Assault on IGN.
  • Warhammer Online on Warhammer Alliance.

Shadow Warrior Free Add-on

The 3D Realms Website announces the free release of an add-on for Shadow Warrior called Wanton Destruction, explaining that the product was not originally released after being shelved by its distributor. The game was recently discovered by Anthony Campiti, former president of Sunstorm, developers of the add-on for the once controversial Build-engine game, and thoughts about the project are offered from Anthony and 3D Realm's Charlie Wiederhold, who was also at Sunstorm during the project's development.

Evening Screenshots

Dystopia Source Demo

The Dystopia Website now offers the promised demo release of this "Cyberpunk Game for the Source Engine" (thanks Hump). The download is 88 MB, and they have posted a new player guide to help folks get started.

Tech Bits

Thanks Mike Martinez.

Evening Consolidation

Evening Mobilization

Evening Metaverse

etc., etc.

Into the Black

Day of Defeat: Source Date

Valve announces that Day of Defeat: Source will be released on September 26:

Day of Defeat: Source (DoD: Source), the latest version of the WWII online action game from Valve®, will be made available to gamers everywhere on September 26.

"Day of Defeat has quietly been one of the most played online action games for the past three years," said Gabe Newell, president and founder of Valve. "Day of Defeat: Source represents a major leap forward in both graphics and gameplay, and pushes the Source engine harder than any other Source project. "

DoD: Source takes the classic teamplay of DoD and expands the experience with Source, the engine technology Valve created for Half-Life® 2 and it's next generation of games. With this technology, DoD: Source offers state of the art graphics with optimized versions of popular maps and all new player, weapon and world models, plus support for HDR lighting.

DoD: Source leverages the power of the Source engine by introducing advanced sound technology to provide a more immersive soundscape and integrated physics simulation technology for ragdolls and physically simulated objects throughout each map.

Available via Steam for just $19.95 and in the Counter-Strike: Source retail package, DoD: Source is a rebuild from the ground up of Day of Defeat on the Source engine.

DoD: Source will be available for pre-load and pre-order next week. Those who purchased the Half-Life 2 Silver or Gold Steam offers will receive a request to pre-load the game at this time and will receive access to play the moment the game is made available.

For more information, visit www.steampowered.com

African Alliance Cancelled

Game Factory Interactive and MiST land South announce cancellation of African Alliance, reducing -- though not eliminating -- potential confusion over the multiple "Alliance" games undergoing concurrent development at multiple MiST land locations (story). Development continues apace on Jagged Alliance 3D, and presumably on the similarly titled Jagged Alliance 3, though we have not heard much about that project in a while, and it is not mentioned in the plans included with this announcement. Here's word:

We have to inform that GFI company and MiST land South agreed to close down the development of African Alliance. The ground for this decision was a desire of the team to concentrate on qualitative development of the other titles.

All resources involved in African Alliance have been relocated to Jagged Alliance 3D project. The change in the company priorities is also supported by the idea of focusing on other projects of this studio - Warfare and 4th Battalion.

Finally, about the projects that are in development tightly on schedule. At the end of this year gamers will move to the heart of Middle-East conflict in WarFare. And the beginning of the next year will be blessed by Jagged Alliance 3D release.

Earth 2160 Patch

New patches are now available for Earth 2160, updating Reality Pump's RTS sequel to version 1.35. Word is: "The Gold Update 1.3.5 simplifies missions in the Easy mode and fixes the following bugs - crashing in LC Mission 7, AI locking up in the Multiplayer mode 'Uncle Sam', UCS allies blocking player units and some behavioural oddities in the infantry and the ED Transporters." There are separate patches for the English, German/German Gold, and Polish editions of the game.

War World Demo/Trial Patch

A patch for the demo/trial edition of War World is now available, updating the mecha-based shooter to version 1.06. The new version adds Team Deathmatch, new demo levels, customizable performance and gameplay enhancements, bug fixes, and more. A new full installer for the trial is also now available, which allows 60 minutes of free play before a purchase is required. The download is available on the War World Downloads Page. The change log outlines what's new.

Bet on Soldier MP Demo Plans

The Bet on Soldier Website (thanks Frans) announces plans for the release of a multiplayer demo next week for Kylotonn's gambling-themed first-person shooter. The update, which is written in German, outlines plans for a demo with two gameplay modes, with and without exo-skeletons, on the same Cargo Bay map found in the single-player BoS demo (story). The update also mentions that a patch will be released at about the same time for the German retail edition of the game.

Dear Diaries

RPG Vault's Hero's Journey Peek #6 offers a look at the Ugrek Boneshard Clan in Simultronics' upcoming MMORPG written by designer Steph Shaver and artist Mike Doscher. Also, RPG Vault's Horizons: Empire of Istaria Peek #3 wastes no time in shifting into high gear by offering a third look this week from Tulga Games' David Bowman at upcoming changes to their MMORPG, discussing the return of live events to the mix.

The Early Show

The Games Convention trailer from Dark Messiah of Might & Magic is now available, showing off the upcoming Source-engine action game under construction in Arkane Studios. The movie is available on the Ubisoft FTP server and mirrored on 3D Gamers, FileFront, Gameguru Mania, Gamer's Hell, and Worthplaying. Also, there's a new Heroes Of The Pacific movie on the Codemasters Website (registration required) showing off some ships from the World War II aerial combat game, the clip is mirrored on 3D Gamers, FileFront, and Worthplaying. Also, a new Condemned: Criminal Origins movie shows off the upcoming horror/thriller in the works at Monolith Productions, the clip can be found on 3D Gamers, FileFront, Gameguru Mania, Gamer's Hell, and Worthplaying. Finally, the EA Sports Website now offers three new clips from the hockey game in low- and lower-resolution (thanks Frans).

Site Seeing

The overhauled Deep Shadows Website now features an updated Precursors product section offering information and new screenshots for the upcoming follow-up to Boiling Point. Also, a new Civilization IV Teaser Website is online with five new screenshots and some character portraits in the gallery. Thanks Frans.

Morning Q&As

  • Dark Messiah of Might and Magic
    A new publisher distributed Dark Messiah of Might and Magic Q&A on Worthplaying looks at Arkane Studios' upcoming action installment in the M&M series: "We already had some expertise with first person in our previous game (Arx Fatalis), so the challenge was more about how to bring something new to the experience. We decided to tackle the combat system: create a first person melee experience that just felt right. There have been attempts in the past, but we think nothing as convincing. This was a great opportunity and a great challenge. A tremendous challenge in fact."
  • NFS: Most Wanted
    There's a Need for Speed: Most Wanted Q&A on the official website talking with actress/model Josie Maran about her participation in the upcoming racing sequel, while this Need for Speed: Most Wanted Q&A on the official website talks with Michael Mann, line producer on the project: "The EA driving team is always striving to find ways to innovate and provide fresh game play experiences -- even for such a firmly-established brand like Need for Speed. While Need for Speed™ Underground 2 was about secret races in the dead of night, in Need for Speed Most Wanted we are exposing that night-time sub culture to an environment where stakes are heightened, and opportunities for bragging rights enter a new dimension - the more extreme side of illicit racing."

Morning Previews

Windows Gaming Revival?

Microsoft: ‘We’ve been killing PC gaming’ on MCV is an article outlining Microsoft's stated commitment to the PC as a gaming platform, spearheaded by "a bespoke retail concept, offering Xbox 360 and Games for Windows titles, plus a cross-compatible range of peripherals, integrating the gaming experience." The plan springs forth after an admitted failure to properly support this end of the business:

The firm has outlined to MCV details of an 18-month drive to establish Games For Windows as a platform with the credibility of PlayStation and Xbox, ahead of the launch of the Vista operating system.

“It’s our biggest ever investment in Windows gaming,” said product manager Kelly Stanmore. “The Windows business is down 10 per cent year-on-year and we’ve lost shelves of space. We’re killing off that community without the retail support.”

Rhem 2 Delayed

Seeming comfortable that the game will not make it's release date of this past July, RHEM 2 Moves to October on IGN offers the obvious announcement that the adventure/puzzle sequel from Got Game Entertainment is delayed. The article offers a new release date of October 15, but no explanation for the setback is provided.

Morning Screenshots

Thanks Frans.

CoV and Spider-Man Special Editions

NCsoft Reveals City of Villains Collector's Edition Retail Package describes some City of Villains pre-order goodies, including a DVD edition of the game instead of multiple CDs, a map, figurines, and two 14-day free trial codes to be had for the upcoming MMORPG. Also, Activision Confirm Limited Edition Ultimate Spider-Man announces plans for a version of the superhero game that will be signed by some of the folks involved, including Stan "The Man" Lee himself that will also include some extra swag. Finally, on a related note, They're Special: The Rise Of Game Limited Editions on Gamecloud gets opinions from some developers on the increasing frequency of limited and collector's editions of games.

More Game Nudies

Video game heroines strip for Playboy - again has word of plans for more polygonal perversion in the form of nude or semi-nude spreads featuring game figures, including Carla from Indigo Prophecy, a cheerleader from Blitz: The League, as well as characters from God of War, 50 Cent: Bulletproof, Playboy: The Mansion – Private Party, Darkwatch, and Hellgate: London.

Morning Consolidation

Morning Mobilization

Morning Tech Bits

Morning Metaverse

New Q3A Tremulous

A new version 1.01 of the Tremulous modification for Quake III Arena is now available. Word is: "Barring any major show stoppers, this will probably be the last release of Tremulous that requires Quake 3. After a short break I'll dive into knocking out a preliminary standalone version, so that we can determine the amount of work involved."

Competitions

Game Guidance

The PlanetBlackAndWhite Black & White FAQ has been updated to version 1.1 with many bits of tid about Lionhead's upcoming god game sequel. Thanks Frans.

The Mod Squads

A World at War Website is now online, dedicated to this upcoming World War III modification for Half-Life 2.

Op Ed

Friday Game Reviews

Friday Hardware Reviews

etc.

Out of the Blue

Oops. Got waylaid on my way to making my round-up post last night. And on with the show...

Robust Links: Thanks Mike Martinez and Ant.
Links: Improv Everywhere Mission: The Moebius.
Animexpansion.
Stories: Astrodome Radio Station Blocked.
Sept. 11 Recovery Loans Loosely Managed.
Chinese Eatery Sold Donkey in Tiger Urine. Thanks Warren.
Science: Inventor Working Hard on Video Headstones. Would you buy a used car from this man?
Teenagers in temporary autism claim.
Gamblers are a superstitious bunch. Does real research get skipped for this stuff?
Media: Creating Man. Thanks David. If not man, at least Gumby, dammit!



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